One of our favorite characters in Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure (besides that scene-stealer Napoleon, of course) was Mr. Preston, Bill’s permissive and completely inappropriate (because he married Bill’s babysitter, Missy) father. Unlike Ted’s dad, Captain Logan, who was constantly threatening to send Ted to military school, Mr. Preston seemed utterly charmed by his son’s shenanigans.
Bill & Ted Face The Music brought a lot of the old band back together from the two original earlier films: Bill’s (and, later, Ted’s) step-mom, Missy (Amy Stoch); Death (William Sadler); and Captain Logan (Hal Landon Jr.). But where was Bill’s dad? He was referenced briefly in the first scene of the film, but he was nowhere to be found. Turns out, Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey was actor J. Patrick McNamara’s final film role. Don’t fret, he’s still alive! He’s just retired from acting and living out his dream as… A professional poker player.
Though McNamara taught and continued to work as a stage actor for years after Bill & Ted, he eventually traded his SAG card for playing cards when he moved to his hometown of New Orleans and started cashing in chips on the local casino circuit. In an interview published to Medium in 2019, when McNamara was asked if he’d ever be up for appearing in Bill & Ted 3, he responded “They’d have to wave the checkbook at me, I guess, but that’s not gonna happen.”
If you’re curious where some of the other missing actors from the earlier movies ended up, Frazier Bain, who played Ted’s younger brother Deacon (and Napoleon’s babysitter), is now a TV producer and casting director (Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure was his only major film credit). The role of Deacon was assumed by Saturday Night Live’s Beck Bennett. Princesses Elizabeth and Joanna were originally played by Diane Franklin and Kimberley Kates, but they were replaced in Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey by Annette Azcuy and Sarah Trigger, and then again in Face The Music by Erinn Hayes and Jayma Mays, respectively.
What’s pretty impressive is that they were able to assemble so many returning cast members thirty years after the original movie — heck, even the holographic ghost of George Carlin’s Rufus made an appearance. But we did miss Mr. Preston. Now that he’s [SPOILER!] divorced from Missy, we’d love to know what he’s up to. Bill & Ted’s Poker Showdown, perhaps?